Feeling Cold All the Time

Do you shiver of cold even in the moderate weathers? Does your body feel like freezing all the time and are you bound to carry sweater with you always? Then here is something you must know! Feeling cold is okay in winters and when AC is working on its best but if your body temperature is always low; you should be concerned about this. The normal temperature that every human body is capable of maintaining is 98.6 degrees Fahrenheit that fluctuates a bit depending on the surrounding conditions. So why are you feeling cold all the time?

Why Do I Feel Cold All the Time?

1.   Do You Lack Vitamin B12?

Vitamin B12 is not only responsible for converting the food we eat into energy but it also plays an important role in keeping our immune system functional by maintaining cell regeneration as well as digestive and nervous system regulation. Deficiency of vitamin B can leave you with feeling cold all the time.

Causes: pernicious anemia is usually the outcome of longstanding vitamin B deficiency which may lead to lower production of RBCs in the body; thereby presenting as the feeling of coldness. This could be due to malabsorption or autoimmune disease, lack of balanced nutrition in the diet or history of gastric surgery. This could also be due to the deficiency of chemicals which are required for normal biological functioning of hormones (also known as Intrinsic factor).

Treatments: consumption of food with high levels of B12 is recommended for those who are experiencing extreme feeling of cold all the time. Consumption of dairy items including eggs and milk should be increased along with other sources of B12 like meat and fortified cereals.

2.   Can It Be Iron Deficiency?

Iron deficiency can also be responsible for this symptom. Experts suggests that symptoms may occur due to excessive loss of iron or inadequate intake; which may lead to underproduction of hemoglobin. Hemoglobin is a part of red blood cells that is responsible for the red color of the blood and is also responsible for carrying the oxygen to all parts of the body.  

Symptoms of iron deficiency include weakness, shakiness, pale skin, inflamed tongue, lower immune functioning and fatigue.

Treatments: In case of iron deficiency you should add greens in your diet like beans, spinach and broccoli. Dry fruits like apricot and some fortified cereals are also good source of iron. Lean ground beef, liver of chicken, oysters and clams should also be added to your diet.

3.   Your Thyroid Does Not Function Adequately

Thyroid dysfunction can also be the reason if you are feeling cold all the time. Thyroid is responsible for generating the energy by utilizing oxygen and calories which in turn produces heat energy; however, in certain individuals, thyroid gland may not function adequately. This problem can occur more commonly in women than men and may occur at puberty, after pregnancy or at menopause.

Symptoms include feeling pins/needle sensation in hands, thinning of hair, constantly increasing weight despite any significant changes in appetite, constipation, sluggishness and periods lasting for longer time with heavy flow.

Treatments: TSH evaluation is recommended if your thyroid is not working adequately. Hormone replacement therapy is usually the mainstay of treatment in all such cases.

4.   Could It Be Raynaud’s Disease?

In Raynaud’s disease, individuals develop feeling of cold in fingers, ears, toes and nose with burning sensation and redness. Raynaud’s is the result of interruption of the supply of blood in some body parts due to the contraction of artery wall muscles.

Most people experience bouts of Raynaud’s disease in cold weather, while smoking or after touching something chilled. The risk could be of extreme pain, ulcer or gangrene or it could be just an uncomfortable sensation. Existence of Raynaud’s phenomena suggests an autoimmune disease such as scleroderma or others. So, even in minor conditions, consider visiting your GP for blood tests and appropriate therapy.

5.   Are You Aging?

Aging is also responsible for negative changes in the body; for example, it has been observed that physiological aging weakens the immune system and makes you more sensitive to temperature or climatic changes. Poor health may also result in damage to the mechanism that keeps us warm. Other causes like hypothyroidism are also more frequently reported in the aging population. Women who are in menopause phase are feeling cold all the time due to estrogen level fluctuations.

6.  You May Have a Low Weight

Less body fat affects the insulation of your body organs and thus you may feel cold more likely than the individuals with higher body mass index. The nutrients and vitamins deprivation can also deteriorate the internal biomechanics of the body when you eat more junk food. In addition, people who starve and lose huge amounts of weight rapidly are also more likely to feel weak and tired. In case of being underweight, you are advised to have a well-balanced diet. Try improving the muscle mass because having more muscles means more heat generation in the body. Try including strength training in your workout plan.

7.   Is Your Immune System Weak?

You may feel cold all the time only in extremities (hands and feet) or in entire body. Feeling cold in hands and feet could be due to your weak immune system which could be caused by the existence of parasites in your body and can generate infections to harm your body.

Candida fungal infection leaves stress on the system with disruption in hypothalamus which is the master gland of body linked with the control of temperature. The growth of this infection can be controlled by probiotics.

8.   Do You Have Diabetes?

Long standing and poorly managed blood sugar levels can damage your kidneys and may present with feeling cold all the time. Some other symptoms include:

  • Nausea
  • Itching
  • Lower appetite 
  • Difficulty in breathing
  • Swelling
  • Confusion

9.   Make Sure You Don't Have Anorexia

It is an eating disorder which can make you extremely thin and one of its symptoms includes feeling cold all the time. It has some other symptoms which include:

  • 15% lower body weight for the height
  • You get more concerned about your body weight
  • No menstruation for more than 3 months

10.   Is It a Side Effect from the Medications You're Taking?

For angina and increased blood pressure and migraines, doctors suggest beta blockers after which you may end up feeling cold all the time. Beta blocker lower down the circulation of blood in extremities, other than coldness you may also feel cramps in muscles, drowsiness, insomnia and impotence. But after all these side-effects you should not quit taking these pills immediately.

What to Do If I Feel Cold All the Time?

If you feel cold all the time, you should not ignore the situation and must consult to your doctor to know the reason behind it. The treatment of this symptom depends on the primary cause. Addressing the primary disorder helps in controlling the terminal symptoms. 

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